Framed by the distant peaks of the Helderberg Mountains, Western Turnpike Golf Course's 27-hole layout blankets 250 acres of scenic terrain stitched by pine trees. Though the three nines connect to form three distinct 18-hole courses, the presence of multiple ponds, streams, and small, well-fortified greens act as a unifying feature across the entire grassy labyrinth. The horticultural haven is also peppered by a relatively sparse population of 37 sand bunkers, their scarcity due to the abundance of water hazards and previous issues with disoriented sunbathers. With three courses offering various levels of difficulty and five tee options on each course, Western Turnpike presents a sound golf challenge for bona fide aces, mid-handicappers, and those trying to play with a croquet mallet.
The subject of a recent, aggressive overhaul to improve course conditioning, Hales Mills Country Club challenges golfers with a 6,100, par-71 layout. The course shares the green landscape with an all-grass driving range, where golfers can warm up their swing or test out the efficacy of their new camouflage golf bag. After rounds, golfers can unwind at the on-site restaurant, which serves dinner specials and classic pub fare.
Skyline Country Club is a semi-private club that welcomes golfers with sweeping views of the Berkshire mountains and glimmering waters that intersect the grounds. Elevation changes and blind tee shots are frequent throughout the 6,075-yard course, as seen on the 4th hole, which rewards precise tee shots of roughly 110–165 yards with an easy 110-yard shot to the green. The par 5 12th, the course's most difficult hole, forces players to drive onto a tight fairway along the straight 490-yard layout that ends with a false front, a greenside slope that often tricks golfers and sends balls rolling back toward the player like an industrial-grade pop-a-shot. After finishing the course with two consecutive par 4's, golfers can retire to the Club's pub for drinks and eats on the open-air deck, which offers views of the surrounding landscape.
Course at a Glance:
Looking to put a new spin on a classic family activity, the minds behind Glowgolf decided to give the game a phosphorescent update. Incandescent courses place friends and family amid a tropical-fantasy golf world of neon orange, green, and violet surroundings. Players putt luminous orbs through vibrant treasure chests and glimmering windmills while negotiating tricky obstacles near walls portraying black-light-lit aquatic scenes. With more than 20 locations spread over 10 states, Glowgolf's fluorescent labyrinths challenge human players and traveling gnomes.
Golf courses are designed to compound players’ mistakes. An errant tee shot winds up buried in the rough, on a side-hill lie, or shut out behind a tree—where golfers may not be able to take a full swing, let alone concentrate on how to correct their mechanics. In golf, the driving range is the only safe haven. Saratoga Springs Golf Range’s all-grass hitting bays provide a smooth, flat surface that lets golfers concentrate on improving their swings and grants amnesty for past swing transgressions in the form of range balls and a course notary who expunges all mulligans from players’ official records.
Saratoga Springs Golf Range helps swings enter into a harmonious relationship with their sticks through custom club fitting, loft and lie adjustments, and regripping services. The range’s club technicians also offer various repair services for snapped club shafts and emotionally distraught drivers.
The 18-hole course at Rainbow Golf Club takes players careening across a 6,287-yard layout carved into the foothills of the Northern Catskill Mountains. Players rip tee shots from one of five sets of tees per hole, allowing for an enjoyable yet challenging round for greenhorns to green-jacket holders. As rental carts transport players across the well-manicured landscape, they must take care to avoid tree-lined fairways, undulating greens, and feral caddies looking to stock up on golf balls for winter's hibernation. The course's signature hole is the 13th, a 135-yard, par 3 that forces golfers to carry their tee shot over water onto an island green, the only known island in New York. A pro shop, practice facilities, and a restaurant with an outdoor patio overlooking the course all provide entertainment when golfers aren't practicing their postputt struts.
Course at a Glance: